Welshman David Evans attended University College in Cardiff, Wales, and received a Doctor of Music Degree from Oxford. He played the organ in a Presbyterian church in London, and was a professor of music at University College. Evans was also a choral conductor, and served as a judge at the National Eisteddfod, the largest festival of competitive music and poetry in Europe, eight days of performances entirely in the Welsh language. Evans arranged a traditional Spanish melody and it became the hymn tune Madrid, used with the song, Come, Christians, Join to Sing. (For information on the writing of the words, see the second item under Today in 1712.)
Come, Christians, join to sing
Loud praise to Christ our King;
Let all, with heart and voice,
Before His throne rejoice;
Praise is His gracious choice.
Praise yet our Christ again,
Life shall not end the strain;
On heaven’s blissful shore,
His goodness we’ll adore,
(2) Today in 1910 Harriet Buell Died
Harriett Eugenia Peck Buell pondered what it meant to belong to the family of God as she walked home from church on a Sunday morning. By the time she reached home, she had formed her thoughts into some lines of verse. She wrote them out and sent them to a Christian magazine.
Miss Buell often did that. But unknown to her, in this case, a musician named John Sumner spotted her poem and wrote a tune for it. A few months later, when attending a church other than her own, Hattie Buell was startled to hear a soloist sing her poem! It has since become a hymn entitled A Child of the King.
My Father is rich in houses and lands,
He holdeth the wealth of the world in His hands!
Of rubies and diamonds, of silver and gold,
His coffers are full, He has riches untold.
I’m a child of the King,
A child of the King:
With Jesus my Saviour,
I’m a child of the King.
I once was an outcast stranger on earth,
A sinner by choice, an alien by birth,
But I’ve been adopted, my name’s written down,
An heir to a mansion, a robe and a crown.
For some further thoughts on Mrs. Buell’s contribution, see Today in 1834.